Senator Williams Launches Statewide Competition for Constituents to Submit Ideas for New Laws

July 5, 2011 — Do you have strong opinions about conditions in your community and wish you could do something about them?  Do you have an idea that you are certain could be the solution to a problem but don’t think anyone values your opinion? Do you feel that Harrisburg isn’t listening to you? Well state Sen. Anthony Hardy Williams, D-8, is offering you an opportunity to be heard. He has launched a “There Oughta Be a Law” competition. Williams is asking constituents from across the state to submit ideas for new laws. “Some of the nation’s most significant legislation like Megan’s Law has come from the ideas of constituents,” said Williams who serves as minority whip. “At best this competition could lead to the creation of important laws and at a minimum it will promote civic involvement. As a member of the Senate’s state government committee, I can tell you that community involvement is one of the pillars of democracy.”

At least one winner will be selected and Senator Williams will introduce the winning idea next spring as a proposed new law. Contest winners will join Senator Williams for a visit to the State Capitol and may have the opportunity to testify on behalf of their bill at a formal Senate hearing. The competition borrows its name from a cartoon by Al Fagaly and Harry Shorten that was distributed by McClure Newspaper Syndicate from 1946 until Fagaly’s death in 1963. The competition is modeled after a similar competition held by California State Senator Joe Simitian.

“During this week when we celebrate our freedom and independence here in the cradle of liberty and throughout the country, what better way is there to salute our founding fathers than to provide a way for average citizens to participate directly in the legislative process,” said Williams. “While we have preserved many symbols of liberty like the Liberty Bell and historic buildings like Independence Hall, democracy can only be preserved by the active participation of our citizens. This contest will encourage them to do that.”

Click here to enter the contest!